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Rhys Offline OP
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Looking at buying this SA but...

I have the following problem on the fittings - looks like verdigris.

The SA is an early maker with nickel fittings so I guess that the scabbard fittings are also nickel.

Do you think I will be able to get this off with simichrome or other?
If so, will it leave a mark or pitting underneath or will it polish out?

Thanks,

verdigris.JPG (8.23 KB, 697 downloads)

Rhys
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verdigris2.JPG (13.14 KB, 696 downloads)

Rhys
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Some before and after photos of any verdigris problems on nickel would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers


Rhys
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Any good metal polish(Flitz,Simichrome etc.) will remove it but you won't know the extent of the damage until this is done.
Jim

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I would not remove it. This is the patina which gives every antique item the special look and the character.

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When the verdigris is green and remains, it etches the finish and leaves a fine area of pitting, to look as if the spot was sand blasted.
I would remove it with Simichrome (NOT FLITZ-as it is more harsh and leaves a duller, fine scratched surface IMO). The ammonia base in the Simichrome will also neutralize the verdigris slime and remove the offending chemical combination.
Ron Weinand


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Agree with Ron, when it gets a hold it pits the fittings quite badly damaging the piece.

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verdigris is not patina its neglect remove it

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Quote:
I would remove it with Simichrome (NOT FLITZ-as it is more harsh and leaves a duller, fine scratched surface[/quote]

The members of the gun boards report just the opposite "Simichrome is far harsher than Flitz". As a matter of fact I've used Flitz successfully to remove rust from gun blueing without disturbing the blueing. I would NEVER use Simichrome on any blued gun.
Jim

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Jim, I have used both on several occasions and Flitz is NOT the better agent with my experience. It leaves the surface more dull. Also, Simechrome has a silicon polish that protects better than Flitz.
Ron


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I agree with Jim on this one. He cleaned a 1917 Luger for me. Took off the crud but left the finish intact.

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Ron:
I for one don't want something I cleaned to look like a shiney new penny. I know this is a personal preference and flitz does leave the surface duller.
My point here is a shared concern about abrasion. All metal cleaners are to some extent abrasive of they would be useless as cleaners. If someone wishes to they can in in some instances remove verdigris with ketchup or vinegar and salt.
What ever the person uses who posted the above dagger he'll be in a much better position on down the road rather than leaving the dagger in it's current condition.

Dave:
That still a very nice shortened artillery Luger. These are going for more now than the last time we talked about it so you've done
well. here's an unaltered 1915 artillery i recently added to my collection:

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An early SA dagger is one of the few daggers that coulden't harmed by cleaning. The yellow patina IMO is not the same as the more delicate silver patina on silvered daggers. Too much cleaning can damage a silvered dagger. But it's no a real danger for solid nikkel silver fittings on early daggers.

Regards, Theo

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Well said Theo. These solid nickel fittings WILL retone evenly and no damage can be done with Simechrome, but I feel that Flitz DOES cause a dulling to the fittings that is NOT noticable on blued pieces like the Luger.
JMO,
Ron Weinand


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Verdigris pits solid nickle fittings if left uncleaned so better to STOP the damaging process of this green gunk by cleaning off with simichrome or Autosol but its up the to each person with a SA/SS dagger like this to decide to clean off or not imo.
cheers Scott.

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Rhys Offline OP
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Thank you very much for all the comments and suggestions. I am in no doubt that removal is the best/only option. I have used simichrome in the past with good results so this what I intend to use on the dagger.

Cheers,


Rhys
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Rhys,
First any polish will do just that to the fittings, polish them up nice & shinny and leave a less than desired result.
May i suggest using Nu Finish car wax or Ren wax, these will remove the green stuff, not affect the metal in any way, leave the natural patina intact and not polish up the fittings like semichrome or flitz. At least it's worth a try before you take away the character of the dagger forever.

Eric Wien

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Rhys Offline OP
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Eric,

Thank you for the advice. I have a tub of Renwax and a tube of Simichrome so I will try the gentle approach first and escalate things as required.

It looks like the dagger was resting on one side for a very long time - one side is nice and clean and the other side is...not.

What is the gentlest way to clean the gunk/mould built up on the scabbard? Renwax again?

Don't want to damage any of the remaining surface varnish or anodizing.


Rhys
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Rhys-
If you do decide to clean it up could you show some after photos and let me know what product worked best for you.
Thanks

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Dean,

Yes, no problem. Will take some before and after shots.


Rhys
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Just received the following from Flitz:
Jim


Dear Jim,


Thank you for your comments.


The word abrasive is a very broad term too since water itself is considered to be abrasive. However, you are absolutely correct in saying that our Flitz Premium Polish is non-abrasive. The government has allowed us to label our products non-abrasive because the amount of "abrasive" materials used in our products is very minimal whereas the product that you mentioned is known to be an abrasive polish because the amount of "abrasive" materials used is much higher. This being said, when an abrasive polish is used in the proper method and on the correct surface it can provide very good results. Simichrome is a fine product on aluminum & chrome , but you would not want to use it on your firearms, stainless steel, copper, etc. The Flitz Polish can be used on all of those surfaces and more. The full name of our polish is Flitz Metal, Plastic & Fiberglass Polish [and paint restorer too]. Would you use Simichrome on plastic, fiberglass or painted surfaces? I definitely would not.


I hope that I answered your question sufficiently.



Have a wonderful day,
Shari Jentzsch
FLITZ INTERNATIONAL

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please do not clean it, sell it to me, thats how i love em.

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Rhys Offline OP
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Well I finally picked up this dagger a couple of weeks back. When I saw the verdigris, it had to come off.

I promised to show some photos, so here is the first one.

I tried the lower crossguard first with simichrome. I could not remove the verdigris without affecting the surrounding area so I cleaned up the whole guard in the end. I have left the top guard alone for now for comparison.

The results are shown in the photo so that you can see the before and after. I know it is nice to have some patina but looking at the two I think I made the right decision.

guards.JPG (29.87 KB, 370 downloads)

Rhys
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quote:
Originally posted by Rhys:
Well I finally picked up this dagger a couple of weeks back. When I saw the verdigris, it had to come off.

I promised to show some photos, so here is the first one.

I tried the lower crossguard first with simichrome. I could not remove the verdigris without affecting the surrounding area so I cleaned up the whole guard in the end. I have left the top guard alone for now for comparison.

The results are shown in the photo so that you can see the before and after. I know it is nice to have some patina but looking at the two I think I made the right decision.


So do I Rhys, though we'll both now get some stick, anyone who would leave something so much in danger of further damage alone has no respect for the piece.


Guns Mr Nolan, I see no Guns!
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Nolan and Rhys:

But verdigris, like rust, is ORGANIC. How can anyone be against that?

Shame on you for ruining a perfectly good rusting item Wink

John


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quote:
Originally posted by cabbie:
please do not clean it, sell it to me, thats how i love em.


If you like em that way just leave your collection outside for a year or two, they'll soon have that 'weathered' look. Big Grin


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Nolan,

I am sure that the dagger police will have our photos by now... Eek

As collector's often quote, we never really own these items but are the keepers for a while, until they are passed on again. If we left this damage unchecked in our care then there would be nothing to pass on.

John, if the verdigris is ORGANIC then I will dip the scabbard in my yoghurt to supplement my 5 a day! Smile


Rhys
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Verdigris eats away at early nickel silver scabbard fittings. I got a great early SS Schuttelhofer earlier this years with a lot of it on the rear upper fitting. I cleaned it off but the scars are permanent. When I get a chance, I'll post a close-up.

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If you look closly at the previous photo of cleaned and an uncleaned crossguards,I believe you can see where the verdigris has eaten into the nickel silver on the cleaned example.
This stuff IMO should always be cleaned off. Another place it seems to accumulate for some reason is where metal comes into contact with leather like on holsters.
Jim

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I used to be a non-cleaner guy until I got an SS dagger with heavy, crusty verdigris on the crossguards. I pondered for several days before cleaning the guards. As stated above, the green stuff had etched its way into the nickel-silver more than a little. Tiny pits, in fact. I carefully cleaned the gusrds and it was no time before they toned down to a nice non-verdigris patina. I'm glad I did the cleaning and each weapon calls for judgment on whether cleaning is in order. For those who prefer not to clean, to each his own.

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quote:
Originally posted by Grumpy:
I used to be a non-cleaner guy until I got an SS dagger with heavy, crusty verdigris on the crossguards. I pondered for several days before cleaning the guards. As stated above, the green stuff had etched its way into the nickel-silver more than a little. Tiny pits, in fact. I carefully cleaned the gusrds and it was no time before they toned down to a nice non-verdigris patina. I'm glad I did the cleaning and each weapon calls for judgment on whether cleaning is in order. For those who prefer not to clean, to each his own.


That's true Grumpy, though I tend to clean new additions I wouldn't advise anyone to go heavy handed with simichrome on a silvered Heer or a navy with the gilding present, like you said each case has to be judged on its own merit.


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Rhys Offline OP
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Jim/Grumpy,

Yes you can just about make out the areas where the verdigris was at it's thickest in the photo.

It has left small dull patches (the scars that Dave mentioned above) in the nickel which I will try and photograph next time.

I can see how they would develop into areas of tiny pits and then I guess the pitting would grow deeper over time.

I will start working on the other guard next and then the scabbard fittings to even out the finish.

The blade is (surprisingly) in very good condition with a nice deep motto and lots of crossgrain remaining.


Rhys
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Rhys:
Glad you caught it before it got any worse.
Jim

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It is untrue that you will lose your patina forever if you polish your cross guards. If you leave your daggers on your current display mostly in open air cabinets...Then overtime because of the airborne elements you will gain back your patina. Now in a closed environment "padded zipper cases or glass display cases that will hold 1 or 2 daggers with snap shut devices,, this will hold your polished daggers up to 1 year before patina sets in. Nickel fittings only.


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IF you wish to prevent toning or uneven toning, you can use anti-tarnish silver cloth (purchased as fabric stores) to line your dagger bags or make your dagger bags out of this material, and it WILL prevent tarnish in most cases (avoid finger prints on the surface prior to storage).
Ron Weinand


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quote:
Originally posted by Siegfried B:
It is untrue that you will lose your patina forever if you polish your cross guards. If you leave your daggers on your current display mostly in open air cabinets...Then overtime because of the airborne elements you will gain back your patina. Now in a closed environment "padded zipper cases or glass display cases that will hold 1 or 2 daggers with snap shut devices,, this will hold your polished daggers up to 1 year before patina sets in. Nickel fittings only.


Absolutely spot on, these things are getting on for 70 years old now, to suggest that a black toned army dagger or similar has never been touched since the war is ludicrous, unless of course you've owned it since the war.

One thing I have noticed though is the rate of patination or tarnish will largely depend on the air quality where you live, I collected first during the 60's and silver plated daggers and brass ornaments tarnished very quickly, withe the clean air act being brought in the 70's and the demise of coal fires it does now take much longer, for instance the first two Heers I bought about 10 years ago were cleaned up straight away, I always do it as it gives me a chance to check for damage such as deep scratches or thinning plate which can often be hidden by surface gunk, well those two are now taking on that nice rainbow hue which I don't have any objection to, but in short Yeah all metals will retarnish in time.


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What about a dab of tooth paste. I think it works ok.


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i have heard something like that too bob ...i believe that your right.

James

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The BEST way to remove verdigris without using metal polishes is with ordinary lighter fluid, applied carefully with a cotton swab. Disappears just like magic (and the swab gets really ugly green) with no potential to damage the fitting!

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That is a great first post rala2 we are always learning welcome to the forum and thanks for the tip


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